It is common knowledge that dieters are able to lose weight in the short run, but tend to gain it back over time.
Research suggests that roughly 90% of people who shed a significant portion of their body fat will not maintain it long-term.
“We found that the majority of people regained all the weight, plus more. Sustained weight loss was found only in a small minority of participants, while complete weight regain was found in the majority. Diets do not lead to sustained weight loss or health benefits for the majority of people.”
— Traci Mann, UCLA professor
If you want to be in the remaining 10% of people, know this:
Weight loss can be achieved through various modalities, but long-term maintenance of lost weight is much more challenging.
Weight loss interventions typically result in early rapid weight loss followed by a weight plateau and progressive regain.
But this doesn’t need to be your story.
After pondering, worrying, trying, failing and trying again over and over and over for close to three decades, when I finally lost my weight and figured out a way to maintain it, I realised something important.
For years, I believed that weight maintenance meant losing all the extra weight and then stopping the weight loss by returning to living the way we always lived.
This ideology is as innocent as it is prevalent, and just as flawed as is the way the diet industry teaches weight loss.
Let me explain.
If you have believed the theory that you need to be strict about your diet and exercise protocol only in the weight loss phase, let me be the one who tells you that it’s a LIE.
To lose weight sustainably (where you lose weight and maintain it for the rest of your life) you are required to lose weight in a way you are willing to live for the rest of your life.
In simple words, if you cut out certain foods and amp up your workouts to lose weight fast, you are going to regain all the lost weight as soon as you stop following this restrictive, strict regimen.
What does sustainable weight loss actually entail?
The truth is, sustainable weight loss involves much more than obsessing over workouts and food choices. It involves a 180-degree change in our behaviour, mindset and lifestyle.
If sustainable weight loss is your goal, you need to keep these facts in mind:
1. You must make hard decisions to create your desired health
The decisions you have to make as you change your lifestyle and start losing weight become more uncomfortable the bigger your weight loss success gets. If you aren’t willing to make these decisions on a steady basis, maintaining the weight loss might not be possible.
When I say hard decisions, I do not mean the choice to not eat a piece of cake or always choose salads over the foods you truly enjoy.
Hard decisions imply staying consistent in our efforts, not faltering after an overeat or two, letting go of perfectionism and choosing to make our health a priority.
2. You will constantly be in seasons of discomfort during your weight loss journey
When you muster up the courage to make the hard decisions required to get leaner and healthier, you will feel constant discomfort. But discomfort isn’t a sign that something is wrong. It’s a sign that you are stepping into unfamiliar territory.
3. Recognize that time passes no matter what
If you make decisions prioritising comfort, it will be hard.
If you make decisions prioritising discomfort, it will be hard.
Time passes no matter what, so what you choose to do with it depends on the direction you want to go.
4. Decisions made in your comfort zone aren’t challenging
Reaching your goal weight isn’t common because people aren’t willing to invest their resources and energy into choosing long-term health gains over momentary pleasure.
Don’t expect to get sustainable results when you’re making the same comfortable decisions you made to lose weight while dieting, where you regained the lost weight soon after you stopped dieting.
5. Courageous decisions lead to sustainable weight loss
The outcome of only making decisions in your comfort zone is – You will remain stagnant. – You will continue to struggle. – You will start going backwards.
Decisions made with the determination to always prioritize your long-term health are the ones that create results you’ve never achieved before.
6. It does get better
It feels worse before it gets better, but it does get better. Trust yourself enough to make the hard decisions necessary to get the results you are seeking.
7. Long-term benefits require long-term attention
Long-term behavioural changes, mindset shifts and sustained weight loss require ongoing attention. Even the highest quality short-term weight loss programs are unlikely to yield continued positive outcomes without persisting action and support.
The best way to lose weight is slowly, by making achievable changes to your eating and physical activity habits.
Managing your weight is a life-long commitment – not just following a diet for a few weeks to drop kilograms.
Studies show weight management programs focusing on the maintenance of lost weight demonstrate improved long-term weight loss compared to programs without maintenance visits.
The Be Healthy Be You Program is proud to offer long-term support, personal coaching and guidance to help women lose weight in a way they can effortlessly maintain for the rest of their lives. It is achieved by offering coaching and guidance to achieve weight loss and in maintenance to help sustain the loss once the clients reach their goal weight.
If you are a woman who is done overthinking about your health and weight issues, is ready to end the struggle with emotional overeating, feel good in your body & sustainably make peace with food to achieve bigger breakthroughs in life,
Apply to join the priority waitlist of the BE HEALTHY BE YOU Program.
If you’re at the start of your weight loss journey, begin with the strategies that have helped lose 60 pounds and that I teach my coaching clients to achieve sustainable results. Take the FREE Weight Loss Ownership Course.